You look good, have you lost weight?

You look good, have you lost weight?

This post has been scratching at me for days, and finally I have decided to acknowledge the itch and let it be typed.  Co-incidentally, as I fulfil my burning writing angst, I have a million other things I should be better doing, but that is pure coincidence that I am ignoring the dishes, the dogs, and the kids, and sitting down, writing.

I’ll start then shall I.

I have never been fat.

Ever.

I have, and currently do have, surplus body fat.

Me on the left, with my gorgeous friends.  I have body fat.

I have never been ugly.

Ever.

Although when I yell at the kids my face can contort into a masterpiece of ugliness as my temper overspills.

 

Let’s go back to the fat thing,

I am really on one with writing about weight at the moment and it probably gives you an insight into my mind at current.  I have lived my life dominated by the number on the scales.  I still weigh in daily, stark bollock naked, before letting even a sip of water touch my lips and that number on the scale often dominates what I eat for breakfast.  Ironically, the heavier I weigh the more likely it is I eat “crap” for my morning fuel.

As long as I can remember I have judged myself on my weight.

I have written before about the ‘when I am slim I will….’ statement.

And god help me I am trying to change my mental state of mind before I even give any thought to my waistline.

Why?

Because no one should spend hours a day thinking about being a body shape.

Think about being happy, think of ways to grow in body and mind, think about your friends and your family, but don’t waste valuable thinking time on what you will do when your body meets an ideal that your mind is presenting.

Because the more time I spend focused on dieting and those stupid bloody scales, the more I self sabotage and the more food, and eating controls me.

And as Primal Scream once said “I want to be free, to do what I want….”

Let’s be clear, I am not saying I should stop thinking about my waistline and cruise into unhealthy obesity.  What I am trying to break here is the cycle of days being ‘good’ or ‘bad’ dependant on food.  Where my own self worth is calculated on my jean size.

I was asked last week…

You are looking good, have you lost weight?

No.

I was looking good, as had been away with my kids for 6 days and loved every freaking second, I had landed a new contract at work, a friend of mine had just texted to say she loved me – for no reason at all.  I looked good as happiness was smothered all over my face.  Until my brain started to analyse the question.

Do I only look good when I have lost weight?  Will I only be pretty when I am slim? 

Then my mind progresses to a place of deep misery.

I have not lost weight, I know this because I weigh in daily and the scales keep fluctuating but all in all, I am still Miss Piggy’s twin.

Then my mind keeps going, and only people who have issues with food and control will recognise this place.

I should diet, lets only eat fish for one meal a day and drink 14,000 litres of water for a week and it will drop off, then I will be slim and look great. 

Then to..

God there is a twix in the fridge, let’s eat the twix and start tomorrow.

Then to…

I ate the twix, I am huge, I have gained 10 stone in one bite.  I will never be slim, instead I will eat the contents of the fridge, because I am putting two fingers up at the world and just eating, eating, eating.

Then to…

Misery. From the fridge, from my mind-set, from my own conception of what I think I should look like to be happy.

This is the cycle of someone who comfort eats, binge eats, and self sabotages.  If you are reading this (and it makes sense) and you are nodding, I am guessing at some point in your life you have taken laxatives to purge yourself (and christ knows  – sitting shitting all evening just so you can be slim is a truly miserable existence).  I suspect once or twice in your life you have made yourself sick, and I know for sure you have shed tears as you have eaten a giant bar of chocolate.

If you are nodding at any of this, then trust me – you are beautiful, with or without body fat, try to find something else that makes you happy.

Some little scroat of a child called my youngest daughter fat last week.

She has so little body fat on her it is laughable, the obnoxious little wench was obviously being ironic.  But still my daughter learnt body fat is something to be ashamed off, to avoid, to be bullied for.

It isn’t.

And I will not have my children growing up percieveing self worth is found in a tag on their T-Shirt.  I will not have them using food for comfort, food for a treat, or spending hours watching mummy get weighed at fat club, to see her lose/gain/lose/gain and berate herself for it.

Body fat is often a result of other things, sometimes of pure happiness – fall in love and gain a stone.  Sometimes it is to cope, and often it is in retaliation of life being challenging and people telling the world having a bit of body fat means you are a lesser person.

Right now, my and my spare tire are trying to break the cycle of self sabotaging, but there is little point dieting as in one, or maybe two years I will gain it all back again.

I know I need to teach my brain I am so much more than my dress size and happiness is not always found in a plate of pie and mash.  Then I need to put all I know about food into action.  I don’t need to diet or shred – I need to eat well, to be healthy, to be fit.

I am already happy, what makes me unhappy is the way I think if I were a dress size smaller I would be even more so.  What makes me more unhappy is people telling me my happiness is based on my size.

I cannot change others, but I can help myself.

Once that changes…

Well, surely I will be even happier?

 

 

Cover Image courtsey of Shutterstock

 

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5 Comments

  1. August 5, 2017 / 1:53 pm

    I’m nodding in agreement with it all. Except one tiny little thing. ” happiness is not always found in a plate of pie and mash”
    ???
    Happiness is ALWAYS found in pie and mash. Isn’t it? I mean it’s in a gazillion other things too, obviously, but let’s not demonise the pure joy of pie and mash, eh?

    But everything else? yes. A million times yes.

  2. August 5, 2017 / 2:30 pm

    You are NOT FAT! Far from being fat…and we should all have some body fat. Not having it is unhealthy….I have a lot more than you and I am slowly starting to love myself the way I am. I mean I know that i am heavier than the normal but being happy with myself is a lot better than being happy that everyone believes I am beautiful…You are a strong lady and I always looked up to you. We always have moments when we binge but we are humans…we are prone to making mistakes.
    Being happy is a more important than anything else!

  3. Kate
    August 6, 2017 / 10:56 am

    Fabulous post Jane. I recognised all of it. X

  4. August 11, 2017 / 9:21 am

    This is exactly what I have been thinking recently. You put it into words. I am not fat, I have body fat. Yes. A little more than I have ever had, but I am confident in my body and what it can do. I don’t think I’m the strongest I’ve ever been, and certainly not the fittest. But, I’m ok with it and yet there’s this constant feeling when I meet people who’ve not seen me for a few years – they’re thinking how much weight I’ve put on. Of course they’re not; they’re thinking about the work we have to do.

    Funny the way brains work isn’t it. Cheers to raising the future. A future without these hangups.

  5. August 11, 2017 / 11:01 am

    When I was little my dad banned scales in our house. He was living with three woman and decreed that he would not have us all grow up with body weight issues. To this day I have no understanding or knowledge of how much I weigh. Occasionally I stand on scales if I am at a friends house, but having no idea of what is a good or bad weight the upset at the numbers only bother me for a moment.

    I have to judge my weight purely on the reflection I see in the mirror and the way my clothes fit, which wouldn’t be a bad thing but thanks to my PCOS I change weight on a daily basis (I kid you not, one day jeans that hang off me will not do up the next)

    I hate that some child called your child fat. I think it’s a little terrifying if I am honest, a friend of mines three year old daughter refused sweets the other day for fear she would get fat, and I know that my friend has made a conscious effort to NEVER discuss her weight or say anything negative about her body in front of her daughter. It worries me about how engrained in society the message of self worth and weight are. Time to change the message. You need to be healthy and happy!
    Oh and I think you look fantastic.

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